assistant


Apple wants to hire Siri a personal assistant to keep up with the cool kids

Mashable

Apple's AI assistant is tasked with answering your questions and keeping track of your busy schedule, but Siri can't always keep up with all the events jamming the packed-out pop culture calendar. The iPhone maker recently listed a new job posting, spotted by 9to5Mac, for a "Siri Event Maven." The ad's thirst is palpable, incorporating some cringeworthy recruiter-speak to describe a position that will essentially serve as an assistant for Apple's own AI assistant to keep it up to speed on what the cool kids are buzzing about. Unfortunately, the vibe it's giving off is more along these lines: Best of luck to Apple to fill the spot, and to the future Siri Event Maven in their future endeavor of tracking every single made-up holiday in the book.


Driving The Future: How Smart Can A Smart Car Be?

NPR

Car owners form special relationships with their vehicles -- they give them names, customize them and get to know their intricacies and quirks. But what if the car could do the same for the driver? Yui is Toyota's artificially intelligent assistant -- sort of like Toyota's version of Alexa or Siri, but wired into a car. "A demo video of Yui from Toyota envisions a man forming a 20-year bond with his own Yui assistant, with the AI knowing about his family, interests and personality very deeply," reports TechCrunch.


The "Women" That Make Entrepreneurs More Efficient

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While big business battles over whether minimum wage is a living wage, technology and automation continue to take hold. Executive assistants and receptionists have been the largest casualties of technology and increased automation in most entrepreneurial organizations. As recently as 2010 there were 4 million secretaries and administrative professionals working in the U.S. "You know my assistant, Amy Ingram, is an AI bot" Well, not my personal assistant, but an entrepreneur friend of mine uses X.ai's Amy Ingram proudly.


Facebook Messenger's AI assistant helps you save links for later

Engadget

A few features at launch include suggesting stickers to use in conversations or prompting an Uber ride if M detects you need to get somewhere. Today, Facebook is adding even more M suggestions to the mix: a "save it for later" function, birthday wishes and call initiations. If M senses that the people in the conversation are sharing URLs with each other, for example, it'll pop up with an offer to save them for later consumption. Facebook Messenger will get these M suggestions starting today.


Sony's unorthodox take on AI is now open source

Engadget

However, let's remember that it was on the forefront of deep learning with products like the Aibo robot dog, and has used it recently in the Echo-like Xperia Agent (above) and Xperia Ear. Sony joins its rivals Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Amazon and others in making its AI open source. On one hand, it will help developers build smarts into products, and on the other, Sony is hoping that developers will "further build on the core libraries' programs," it writes. However, Sony's AI offerings are certainly unique.


iPhone 8 sales are forecast to be blockbuster

USATODAY

On the heels of the iPhone's 10th anniversary this week, and before Apple unveils its expected new models in September, analysts expect flat year-over-year iPhone sales as consumers wait for the revamped phones. Angelo Zino, a senior equity analyst at CFRA, predicts record iPhone shipments of 241.5 million in the 12 months following the iPhone 8 launch -- smashing the previous high, set by iPhone 6, following its introduction in late 2014. A revamped iPhone is crucial if Apple is to keep pace with rival Samsung's popular Galaxy S8 and inexpensive smartphones from Chinese vendors, which are gobbling up market share, Nguyen says. "Samsung has pretty much recovered, and there is the rise of [Chinese vendors] Oppo and Vivo in terms of market share that make it increasingly harder for Apple," analyst Nguyen says.


How chatbots are shaping the sharing economy -- and vice versa

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Whether you ordered a custom-made gift on Etsy, stayed at an Airbnb on short notice, completed a chore with TaskRabbit, or hailed a car to your home in a few minutes with Uber, sharing economy platforms have become ubiquitous. Because chatbots are perfectly positioned to provide personalized, niche experiences tailored to customers' tastes. Using the example above, a person who sells outfits on Etsy might offer a fashion assistant who can provide tips and how-tos for pulling off a certain look. Because the sharing economy connects customers with independent individuals -- freelancers, everyday people looking to sell excess items, rideshare drivers, etc.


Tech Giants Are Racing to Be the First to Develop "The Last App"

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The following article was inspired by futurist John Smart's series on the future of personal AI assistants, aka Sims. The world has filled up with digital clutter, millions of apps, websites, news sources, videos, messaging programs and social media platforms. Siri, the first widely distributed AI assistant, is about five years old. Combined with advances being made in other areas of machine learning, these assistants will eventually gain the ability to help you complete any task you can think of, relegating all the apps and programs that you use today into the background as they will simply become the abilities of your personal assistant.


Artificial Intelligence Smart Assistants: The Next Big Thing in Computing?

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The promise of these assistants, ranging from Apple's Siri and Google's Assistant to the newcomer, Samsung's Bixby, is that someday we will each have our own personal, always-listening AI which can respond to any wish and command, like Tony Stark's Jarvis in the movie Iron Man. Let's take a closer look at today's AI-powered assistants, their strengths and weaknesses, current use cases, app integration, and how they play into the plans of the biggest companies in tech. These two advantages make Google's Assistant superior for what is now the most common use case for smart assistants: answering basic questions. Here's a chart from a recent Business Insider article that compares smart assistants' performance: The results are striking: Google Assistant much more accurate than Siri, answering questions correctly 90.6% of the time as compared with Siri's 62.2%.


3 important tips for bot builders

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While every interaction essentially comes down to a natural language conversation, different platform capabilities and usage scenarios dictate which platform makes the most sense for your brand. Voice generally works best for quick interactions, such as tracking a flight. Incorporating natural language processing (NLP) into your assistant depends on its use case. For example, we saw strong upticks in usage of Kayak's Messenger bot when we allowed people to answer questions with simple touch replies.